Community right to bid

The Community Right to Bid, also known as Assets of Community Value, gives people the chance to bid to buy and take over the running of assets that are of value to the local community.

Summary

Voluntary and community organisations can nominate both privately and publicly owned assets to be included on a list of assets of community value. This list is managed by the council.

If a landowner wants to sell a registered property, they must tell the council.

If a community group wants to buy the asset, they can trigger a 6 month moratorium to give them a chance to prepare a bid for it.

During this period, the owner cannot sell their property on the open market.

This gives community groups an increased chance to save much loved shops, pubs or other local facilities by developing a proposal and raising the required capital.

At the end of the 6-month period, the owner is free to sell the asset to whoever they wish and at any price.

Nominations

Who can nominate an asset of community value?

Only eligible voluntary and community organisations can make nominations, not individuals, nor the council.

The organisations must:

  • have a local connection to the property they wish to nominate; this means that its activities are wholly or partly concerned with the administrative area of Bristol City Council or a neighbouring local authority.
  • be one or more of the following:
    • an unincorporated community group with at least 21 members who are registered to vote in the Bristol City Council area
    • a parish council
    • a charity
    • an industrial and provident society
    • a local neighbourhood forum
    • a company limited by guarantee or a community interest company.

See the guidance notes below for a full list of criteria.

How to nominate an asset of community value?

A nomination has to include certain information. To ensure that you comply with the requirements, please use the Assets of Community Value nomination form (word doc, 82k) (opens new window) .

The nomination must include:

  • the address of the property
  • details of the owner and current occupants
  • the extent of the site and its proposed boundaries
  • why you feel it is an asset of community value.

You must also provide evidence of your eligibility to nominate.

Full details of the process can be found in the Regulations and explanatory note published by the government.

What counts as an ‘asset of community value’?

A building or piece of land is deemed to have community value if:

  • the use of the land or building currently, or in the recent past, furthers the social well-being or cultural, recreational or sporting interests of the local community
  • this use (as described above) of the building will continue to further the social well-being or interests of the local community
  • the use of the building or land must not be deemed ‘ancillary’, ie of secondary purpose. This means that the use of the land or building to further social well-being or interests of the community must be its principal use.

What happens following nomination?

We have to decide whether or not to list the asset, within eight weeks following the nomination. Once we have received the completed form, we will check the technical issues such as the eligibility of the nomination and the organisation making the nomination, completeness of the information supplied, and the fact that the asset is not in an excluded category.

Decisions as to whether the nominated assets are of community value will be made by a specially convened officer asset group.

Assets that are considered to be of community value will then be added to the ‘List of Assets of Community Value’. Assets will remain on the list for five years and a land charge will be registered against the property. When the five years have expired, an eligible community organisation can submit a new nomination.

We will take all practicable steps to notify the owner and lawful occupants that it is considering listing the property. We will also notify these people of the outcome of the nomination.

The organisation which originally nominated the asset will be notified of the outcome, together with reasons if the application is unsuccessful. They will also be notified if the asset is subsequently removed from the list, following a review of the decision.

If the nominated asset is not considered to be an asset of community value, or if the nomination was ineligible, we will provide an explanation as to why it was unsuccessful to the organisation which made the nomination. In such circumstances, the property will be added to the list of ‘Land Nominated by Unsuccessful Community Nominations’ and will remain on the list for five years.

If we decide to list a property, the property owner can ask for a review and there will be a process for an appeal to an independent body. Further guidance will be provided in the letter to the property owner. Nominators are not able to appeal the decision made in respect of their nomination. However, they can make a complaint through the council's complaint procedure if they feel we have not followed the correct procedure.

List of assets of community value

Viewing the lists

Assets of community value list (pdf, 306k) (opens new window) s contains the details of the successful and unsuccessful nominations. You will also be able to request one free copy of the list using the details in the contact information section of this page.

What happens when an asset is listed?

The owner of the property must advise us when they intend to sell the property and we will include details on our published lists and we will inform the nominator. If no community interest group notifies the council within six weeks that it wishes to bid, the owner is free to sell their property as they see fit.

If an eligible community interest group notifies the council within six weeks that it wishes to bid for the property, it will have up to six months in which to prepare its case.

Bids by community interest groups

Who can bid?

Only community interest groups that meet the Government's criteria can bid; not all groups that are eligible to nominate are also eligible to bid.

Community interest groups should have a local connection with the asset and be one or more of the following: a parish council, a registered charity, a community interest company, a company limited by guarantee or an industrial and provident society.

Full details of the eligibility criteria can be found in our guidance notes for voluntary and community groups interested in nominating assets of community value (pdf, 117k) (opens new window) and in the Act and the Regulations.

If more than one community interest group is interested in purchasing the property, we would encourage the groups to work together.

How do community groups bid?

Within six weeks from the council notifying the community that an owner wishes to sell their listed property, an eligible community interest group would need to let us know in writing that it wishes to bid. This then opens a six month period (from the day the owner notified the council) in which to prepare a bid; this is known as the moratorium period.

We will acknowledge the request to bid and will notify the owner that the moratorium has been triggered.

The status of the listed asset on the list will be changed to reflect that it is for sale and that the moratorium has been triggered.

Support available

Funded by the Department for Communities, Locality is a leading network for community-led organisations, bringing together all strands of the partner organisations involved in the Community Rights support service. They have created a web site called My Community Rights.

Listings overturned

Property Asset Name: The New Church, Cranbrook Road, Bristol, BS6 7BU

Listing overturned: 12 February 2015

Contact information

Place - Property

Parkview (2nd Floor)

PO Box 3176

Bristol, BS3 9FS